Vancouver Aquarium mourning loss of Kavna the beluga whale

The 46-year-old whale and inspiration for Raffi's "Baby Beluga" song died on Sunday afternoon, most likely from cancer.

The Vancouver Aquarium is mourning the loss of Kavna, the 46-year-old beluga whale who died on Sunday, Aug. 6, at approximately 3 p.m.

A necropsy held on Sunday night revealed that the whale has lesions most consistent with cancer, although the Aquarium has yet to rule out an infectious cause as a possibility. Kavna was being treated for a reproductive disorder and further tests and examinations will be held over the next few months.

At 46, Kavna was known to be the oldest beluga whale in any accredited aquarium in North America. Most beluga whales in the wild live to an average of 25 to 30 years.

Kavna had been at the Vancouver Aquarium for the past 36 years, first arriving in 1976 from Churchill, Man.

She was famously known as the inspiration for Raffi’s hit song, “Baby Beluga.”


by Kolby Solinsky

*with files from the Vancouver Aquarium

Kavna the beluga whale - Vancouver Aquarium